Thailand Digital Handout Delays Once Again as New Proposal Seeks to Limit Grantee

On Wednesday (25 Oct), Thailand’s Deputy Ministry of Finance, Mr. Julapun Amornvivat said the THB 10,000 digital wallet project will be delayed, from the previous schedule within February 2024 to April or May instead. The deputy explained after the second meeting of the project sub-committee in which he sat as a chair that the project budget and security preparation took longer than expected as it will need lengthy testing.

Julapun emphasized that this project will use the national budget as its financial source, divided into 4-year liabilities without the need to source from a state-owned savings bank. The deputy also said that “borrowing would be the last option to consider” but for now, there’re many “state-owned financial sources” that can be pulled from; however, there is still “no consensus” on the consideration of other financial sources outside the national budget.


The deputy also revealed that the sub-committee agreed to adjust the policy range from within 4 kilometers of the official registered address of the user, to within the district instead as some areas did not have enough stores available. However, there is no consensus on the matter and it will need a decision from Srettha Thavisin, the Prime Minister, which is also the Ministry of Finance.

Currently, the sub-committee is divided into two camps. One wants to maximize the economic stimulus effect via universal handout, while the other camp wants to filter out “the rich” which is difficult to define. The deputy proposed three options during the meeting yesterday, which will be presented to the cabinet as follows;


1) Focus the handout to the poor which only included around 16 million recorded in the national welfare database and will cost around THB 150 billion.

2) Cut off those who have a monthly salary higher than THB 25,000 and/or total THB 100,000 bank deposits, which will limit the user to 43 million and will cost around THB 430 billion.

3) Filter out those who have a monthly salary higher than THB 50,000 and/or total THB 500,000 bank deposits, which will limit the users to 49 million and will cost around THB 490 billion.


The deputy said the sub-committee will provide a detail of each choice for the main-committee who has a responsibility to resolve and make the final call on the matter. Meanwhile, the rights verification will include normal and legal persons, village funds and community enterprise to focus the spending on consumer goods.